Something as simple as understanding which oil to use if the vehicle needs topping up can save a fleet from expensive damage to engines.
Many modern diesel engines use synthetic oils to extend service intervals, but it can be difficult to work out which type to use, even if drivers use the handbook.
For some fleets, the answer may be to use fuel cards with strict limitations on oil purchases. An Association of Car Fleet Operators meeting heard that companies should be able to specify the type of oil purchased on the card.
Steve Smith, managing director of Feather Diesel Services, told members of the North East and Tyne Tees region of ACFO: ‘Some vehicles are now supplied with a litre of oil. If you use wrong-grade oil you can have overheating and engine damage.’
One fleet manager said: ‘How are we going to get drivers to check oil anyway when getting them to put air in the tyres and the right fuel in the tank is difficult enough? ‘It is back to basics. All drivers need to check oil levels regularly and top up.’